Serving New Americans
We know that more than 55% of new Americans use the public library at least once a week. They find a trusted environment, resources and community connections that can ease the way to full participation in American society. For many people, new to the U.S., libraries serve as a gateway to citizenship, English language learning, and civic engagement. Libraries offer educational materials and training resources on immigration and citizenship.
Museums also address the needs of new arrivals with cross cultural programming and inclusive community outreach. Museum exhibitions and events help deepen understanding of diverse cultures and strengthen community connections.
On June 30, 2013, IMLS Director Susan H. Hildreth and United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Director Alejandro Mayorkas signed a memorandum of understanding to work together to help libraries provide accurate and useful information about immigration and citizenship benefits, promote an awareness and understanding of citizenship, and ensure the integrity of the immigration system.
For more information see the memorandum of understanding.
See resources for libraries on the USCIS website.
Webinars -- Upcoming
Overview of myE-Verify
Thursday, July 2, from 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. EDT
IMLS and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) offer another webinar in their series for public librarians about immigration and U.S. citizenship topics. This webinar will explore a new online service for the general public. Representatives from USCIS will provide an overview of how librarians can help their customers use the service. Read more.
POSTPONED: Bridges to Citizenship: Connecting Classrooms and Libraries to Expand and Enhance Services for Adult Immigrant Learners
(Originally scheduled for Wednesday, May 27, 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. EDT)
IMLS and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) invite you to learn more about resources available to immigrant-serving organizations and adult education programs. Representatives from the USCIS Office of Citizenship will provide an overview of how libraries can expand and enhance adult citizenship education services and obtain free materials to display. May 25 Update: This webinar has been postponed until a later date. Please watch for announcements in the coming weeks for the new date and time.
Webinars -- Archives
Human Trafficking Prevention 101: An Overview for Public Libraries
Monday, February 23, from 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. EDT
As part of their partnership to provide resources for public librarians, IMLS and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will present a webinar on Human Trafficking Prevention and the Blue Campaign. Representatives from the Department of Homeland Security Blue Campaign and USCIS will discuss the resources and tools available to help combat human trafficking that librarians can help distribute in their communities.
Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (PDF, 3.4MB)
Wednesday, June 25, 2014
On June 15, 2012, the Secretary of Homeland Security announced that certain people who came to the United States as children and meet several guidelines may request consideration of “deferred action” for a period of two years, subject to renewal. The webinar, presented by USCIS and hosted by IMLS, will provide librarians with a basic understanding of deferred action, specifics on who may qualify, and identify how to file.
E-Verify: Employment Eligibility Verification Webinar for Public Librarians (PDF, 1.9MB)
Monday, June 2, 2014
This webinar will explore E-Verify, the federal government’s no-cost web-based service that enables employers to verify new hires’ employment eligibility. The presentation will also include an overview of Form I-9, the Employee Rights Toolkit, Self Check, and other USCIS resources. Familiarity with these resources can be vital for public librarians to assist library customers with employment eligibility verification information.
USCIS Citizenship Education and Initiatives (PDF, 2.2MB)
Thursday, March 6, 2014
This presentation will build on many of the topics discussed in the first USCIS-IMLS webinar held on February 4, 2014. Specifically, this webinar will highlight USCIS educational resources related to citizenship and the naturalization process, as well as information on how libraries can actively engage in citizenship-related activities and events.
USCIS Customer Service Tools and Resources: An Overview for Libraries
Tuesday, February 4, 2014
IMLS and USCIS are partnering to ensure that librarians have the necessary tools and knowledge to refer their patrons to accurate and reliable sources of information on immigration-related topics. The webinar highlights the agency’s work with libraries, ways in which libraries can find immigration and citizenship information online, and practical activities libraries can implement to engage the immigrant community. Read transcript (PDF, 87 KB)
Susan Hildreth and Alejandro Mayorkas signing the memorandum.
Partnership resources on the IMLS website: